Last week Alana MacInnes became famous overnight when she posted online a picture of a dress that to some people (me) looked white and gold and to others looked blue and black. Check out #TheDress on Twitter if you missed it. While this was going viral I was dealing with other optical illusions in the world of interior design.
It started on Thursday with a late night email from a slightly rattled customer asking me whether the bathroom suite the builders had installed was supposed to be 3 different shades of white….By the time he called me in the morning explaining it was a false alarm and a trick of the light I was already on a white knuckle ride to the nearest showroom to check it out for myself, and had arranged for a replacement suite to be shipped out as soon as I gave the word. Thankfully no longer necessary.
Friday had me dealing with the white lies of furniture retailers. Call me old fashioned but the furniture in this photo below looks pure white to me. Well its not. I won’t shame the retailer as they’re not alone in marketing whiter than white images of goods that are ivory, cream or another shade of off white but as an interior designer it’s very frustrating. White should be the safe colour when it comes to internet shopping.
Saturday morning brought more white noise. This time a call from one of the builders asking if the wardrobe doors he’d just picked up for me were supposed to be off-white. They weren’t. I was starting to regret leaving the white collar world when I hopped back in the car (which is white BTW) and headed to site to check it out for myself. Thankfully another false alarm. When we got them out of the van, lined up next to some white MDF and some white polystyrene the difference was negligible.
Now it might not sound like it, but I actually love the fact that we have more than fifty shades of white (I had to get that in somewhere). Two of my favourite colours right now are Cornforth White and Old White by Farrow & Ball. The first is a beautiful pale grey and the second looks grey in bright light and green in shadier rooms. My point is, manufacturers and retailers need to play the white man and provide accurate images and descriptions of their products.
So thats enough (white) trash talk from me. But before the men in white coats come to take me away I leave you with a word of warning. If you want something that is as white as a sheet, don’t trust images, go and check it out to avoid being left with a white elephant.